On June 26, in Academy Town, Peshawar, Pakistan, Salamat Masih and 30 friends and family gathered to celebrate the birth of his daughter. 12 Taliban members of the Lashka-e-Islam group broke in and held the Christians at gunpoint.
Quoting from VOM contacts, “With machine and automatic guns, they forcibly separated the men from the women and children. Slapping the Christian men, they commanded all 16 men, including Pastor Zulifqar and Haji Muhammad Saraj, to get into the five waiting vehicles.”
For one hour the men were held captive. Not only were their mobile phones and money stolen from them, but they were also beaten and abused. Then for another ten hours they were held in a cave until released.
Academy Town was formally a madrassa (a Muslim school). Again quoting from VOM contacts, “A local Muslim renovated the madrassa into smaller homes and rented them out to Christians. Three months ago, and then, again, a week prior to this incident, Haji Muhammad Saraj was confronted by the Islamic fundamentalist group Lashkar-e-Islam and received a verbal notice to evict all Christian families from the homes. Magal Baz, the leader of the terrorist group stated, ‘Christians should not reside, pray, or celebrate in a place that was formerly a madrassa.’”
Pray that these believers would heal quickly and that their witness would continue to grow. Pray for the men that abused the Christians, that they would see their sins and repent and follow Jesus as Lord.